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Once you make this beer-braised hot dog recipe, you won't make them any other way. Oh, and you might as well braise that sauerkraut while you're at it!
- 3 cups refrigerated sauerkraut, rinsed, drained
- 1/2 cup dark beer (such as porter)
- 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
- 1 12-ounce bottle Belgian kriek (cherry) or raspberry lambic beer
Simmer sauerkraut, beer, and sugar in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat 5 minutes. Season with pepper.
FOR HOT DOGS
Bring beer and sugar to simmer in medium skillet over medium-low heat. Add hot dogs; simmer until dogs plump and beer syrup coats lightly, about 8 minutes. Transfer dogs to grill; reserve syrup. Top each bun with grilled hot dog and sauerkraut; drizzle with reserved beer syrup. Serve with mustard.
Hot Dogs Simmered in Beer
Hot dogs simmered in beer are deliciously tender and have a mild flavor that works perfectly with our beer-infused sauerkraut topping.
Slow-simmering hot dogs in beer gives them a mellow flavor and tender texture that’s a great alternative to grilling or frying. Naturally you can top them with anything you want, but we think out beer infused sauerkraut makes the perfect complement.
An always classic side to any kind of hot dog are french fries. One of our favorites pairings with this recipe is our spicy garlic oven fries.
More hot dog recipes:
Bratwurst vs Sausage
Germans love their sausages, and bratwurst is just one of the many in the list.
So what’s the difference between a regular sausage and bratwurst? Sausage can be made from dried sausage, smoked sausage, and fresh sausage with many countries having their own version. Bratwurst are fresh rather than smoked or dried.
What’s in a bratwurst? Bratwurst is a fresh sausage of pork and veal, flavored with seasonings like caraway, coriander, and or nutmeg. Different regions of Germany have different flavorings with other popular sausages like garlicky knackwurst being one of my dad’s favorites.
Sheboygan-style bratwursts are a popular version of sausage with plenty of onion that hails from Wisconsin, and is one of my favorite ways to make my brats.
6 bratwurst sausages
2 bottles (12 ounce size) German beer
1 can (32 ounce size) sauerkraut, drained
3 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion
1 1/2 tablespoon fennel seeds
Bring beer to a boil in a large pot fitted with a steamer basket. Reduce heat to medium. Add brats and steam for about 10 minutes till cooked through.
Meanwhile, drain kraut. Melt butter over medium heat in a large saute pan. Chop onion in a small dice. Saute in butter till softened.
Add kraut and fennel seeds. Cook for about 10 minutes until flavors marry and kraut is heat through. Serve brats with kraut.
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Any sausage will work in this pretzel bun (because what doesn't work with a pretzel bun?), but kielbasa is our go-to for its hearty flavor.
Since 1995, Epicurious has been the ultimate food resource for the home cook, with daily kitchen tips, fun cooking videos, and, oh yeah, over 33,000 recipes.
Grilled Beer Braised Bratwurst
Ingredients US Metric
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (2 oz), plus more for the buns
- 4 garlic cloves, minced or grated
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to taste
- 1/4 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds, or more to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Eight (5-to 6-ounce) bratwursts (or other fresh sausages), preferably Wisconsin-style, pricked with a fork in several places
- Two or three (12-ounce) bottles beer, or more as needed
- 1 cup sauerkraut, undrained
- 8 hoagie rolls, mini-baguettes, top-split hot dog buns, pretzel rolls, or, natch, bratwurst buns
- Mustard, for serving
Fire up your charcoal or gas grill to high heat with the lid closed to ensure it gets nice and hot.
Place a Dutch oven or largish pot on a corner of the grill or on the stovetop over medium heat. Toss in the butter, garlic, and cayenne and cook for about a minute, stirring constantly so the garlic doesn’t brown.
Add the brown sugar, caraway seeds, and some pepper and then add the brats and enough beer so that everything is swimming. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 10 minutes.
Add the sauerkraut and its liquid and gently simmer until the brats are cooked through, about 10 minutes more. (You can tell when the brats are done because they’ll expand and the meat will seem tight in its casing.) Remove from the heat. Let the brats remain in the cooking liquid until you’re ready to grill them.
Brush the cut sides of each bun with butter. (If you have time to melt the butter first, all the better!) Put the buns, cut side down, on the grill until crisp at the edges, magnificently golden brown, and toasted through and through. Transfer the toasted buns to a roasting pan or disposable aluminum pan and tent with foil to keep warm.
Use tongs to retrieve the brats from the liquid. Carefully grill the brats, being careful for any hot liquid they may exude and turning as necessary, until slightly charred on the outside, about 10 minutes.
Immediately serve the brats, straight from the grill, on the toasted buns with mustard and a heap of sauerkraut drained through a slotted spoon. Include ample napkins. Originally published September 26, 2014.
Recipe Testers' Reviews
Wow! These grilled beer braised bratwurt were by far the BEST brats I've ever made. Same goes for the sauerkraut that's cooked in the braising liquid. The flavor and juiciness were simply amazing. Everyone raved about these. My husband even said they were better than the best brats we'd previously had, which was in the "German" town of Leavenworth, WA. I thought the kraut was equally amazing. I'm saving this recipe. It will be forevermore my go-to when I'm in the mood for beer brats.
We used a mix of 2 different kinds of microbrew beer—porter and IPA—and the flavor was great. I used sourdough buns from our local bakery. I really like caraway so I added an extra teaspoon of that. And an extra cup sauerkraut, too, since that was the amount in the bag I bought.
My only warning is that when you put the brats on the hot grill, stand back, as a few of them literally squirted out liquid (it reminded me of the way clams squirt water out of the sand on the beach unexpectedly).
This grilled beer braised bratwurst recipe is now one of my favorite sausage recipes! These brats are so good I could eat them every night—and I'm really not a huge sausage fan. The aroma fills the house as the sausage simmers and has everyone waiting in anticipation. It's worth the braising for that amazing scent alone.
I used a Hefeweizen for the beer. The cooked brats grill up with perfect grill marks and are fantastic with all sorts of mustards. We used yellow mustard, Dijon mustard, and a spicy Syrah mustard. There was no need for any other toppings. I used a stick of melted butter for the rolls, which looks a little scary, but it produced some delicious and toasty sandwich rolls off the grill. I used larger hoagie-style rolls instead of hot dog buns. They were perfect—not too much bread and easy to hold and eat. Some of the sauerkraut stuck to the brats and frilled up crispy on the sausage. It was a lovely touch. I might grill a bit more of the sauerkraut on the edges of the sausage next time.
There was a lot of liquid left over after preparing and braising the brats. I placed mine in the refrigerator overnight and made a second batch of brats with it the next day. They were super.
The hands-on time is about 25 minutes with a total time of about 45 minutes, which makes this a great recipe for a busy weeknight or a lazy afternoon.
Where I come from—a German family in the bowels of a VERY German city—bratwurst and sauerkraut are as common as the grass beneath our feet. EVERYONE has their favorite bratwurst, and EVERYONE has their favorite sauerkraut. I've been putting writing this review on the back burner, not because I didn't like the grilled beer braised bratwurst recipe, but because I REALLY LOVE it, and I was afraid that I'd somehow shortchange the recipe in my review.
My choice for the beer was a high-quality black and tan. From my perspective, no point in using a weak, pale beer. I opted for a crusty baguette instead of an all-too-ordinary hot dog bun. I prepared the brats and sauerkraut on the stovetop as I didn't want to use more propane than was necessary. I also find it much easier to cook using a pot on the stovetop than on a grill.
I GUARANTEE whatever your favorite sausage may be— including a simple hot dog—this recipe will leave you wanting more. I would also like to suggest that simply preparing the sauerkraut simmered in beer, sans sausage, would be a good bet. This sauerkraut is a fabulous mix of sweet and hot that can stand up to ANY side dish you can conjure. I can picture a heaping mound of this sauerkraut atop my favorite Reuben sandwich.
I can also attest to the fact that it is quite good eaten at 1 AM by the light of the refrigerator. My choice of the black and tan and the crusty baguette (generously brushed with melted butter) were WONDERFUL choices. I can't wait to make this again. I hope my review does it justice!
These grilled beer-braised bratwursts tasted great. The spices, the beer, the sauerkraut, the smokiness from the grill—all these things were wonderful enhancements to the bratwursts.
I drained and washed off the sauerkraut to rid it of excess sodium before adding it to the pan. Since the brats were simmering and not outright boiling, not that much beer cooked off during the time they were on the stove.
These were tasty enough that I would make them again.
This was the best sausage sandwich I've ever had. Comfort food at it's best. What a satisfying quick and easy dinner which received all thumbs up! Dinner does not get much easier or tastier than this!
I skipped the grilling part and made this recipe in just 20 minutes. I still wanted to achieve a slightly brown exterior to the sausages so I heated a cast iron skillet, got it screaming hot, and quickly browned them in the hot pan after their initial 20 minutes of cooking in the liquid. For the beer I used a nonalcoholic Becks beer and one bottle was plenty. Just to be sure I had enough liquid, I added about 1/2 cup more water but I didn't really need it. I only used 2 tablespoons of butter and thought it was plenty for the garlic to quickly cook. I also added 2 cups more sauerkraut with liquid, but next time I will add 3 cups more since we all love sauerkraut.
I served the sausages on a freshly baked baguette cut into sausage lengths to create the roll or bun. I substituted a spicy Austrian Kasekrainer-style sausage from my local butcher for the bratwurst. I really think any sausage would work well with this recipe, but I will look for the brats next time. I didn't grill the bread with butter due to time constraints but the meal was still satisfying as ever.
I served the sausages with a side of roasted broccoli and called it a meal.
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I keep the Brats swimming in the crockpot and everyone grills their own. And of course, REAL Sauerkraut. Fermented!
That works, too, Andi! Although those brats are swimming in beer or ale, yes?
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
In a disposable lasagna pan, break apart the onion rings and layer them in the bottom of the pan.
Sprinkle the garlic over top and drizzle with olive oil.
Place the brats on the onions, pour in the beer and nestle the brats into the liquids so half is submerged into the beer. Cover the pan tightly with heavy duty aluminum foil.
Place on the middle rack of your preheated oven and cook for 30 minutes. When time is up, flip and slip the uncovered pan back into the oven for 30 more minutes or until the brats are fully cooked.
Grill the brats for 2 to 3 minutes a side or until the skin is crispy and has good color. Transfer the grilled brats back to the warm beer liquids to keep warm while serving.
Serve with the beer-soaked onions, sauerkraut, mustard, jalapenos or anything your heart desires.
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Beer-Braised Hot Dogs with Braised Sauerkraut - Recipes
SUMMERTIME AND THE LIVING IS EASY.
And so are Beer Braised GRILLED Brats! Easy, delicious and sets your brats above and beyond the rest of the neighborhood. Just one more way that will help make you recognized as "The Guy" (or Gal) when it comes to backyard grilling!
All of the prep work is done in advance. Brats are raw sausage (as opposed to hot dogs which are precooked). But they also come with a casing on the outside to hold the meat n shape. This casing needs to be punctured to allow the beer to seep into the meat. Release your inner WOLVERINE, grab a couple of toothpicks and dive in a couple of dozen holes throughout the brat.
I make a bed of Onions in a crock pot (single layer to prevent the brats from touching the HOTTER bottom). Set the crock pot on the lowest setting, Add a bottle of beer and another layer of onion rings.
As in all cooking, the quality of the beer does matter. It's better to drink less than to drink watered down light beer. I prefer to shop local, drink local. Here in Kansas City there is a wonderful local brewer, Boulevard Beer . I selected their Single Wide I-P-A , India Pale Ale. You only need to cover the brats about half way up their sides, I have a smaller crock pot that works great, only needing one bottle of beer.
Slow heat the beer (not even a simmer, low heat) for about an hour, turn the brats and slow heat for another hour and you are ready to grill!
The brats will cook fast, so a high heat just to char the outside is all you need! Go ahead, toast the buns and add a pot of beans and you have a low effort, just a few minutes of hands on work yet a FANTASTIC BBQ meal!
I did make the meal a little more festive.
Once the brats were grilled, I dressed them in separate ways.
From simple Onions and Pickles ( Pickled red onions , I guess not as simple, but they sure looked colorful and of course delicious).
More traditional Sauerkraut, Mustard and tomato slices.
To a more exotic grilled pineapple and bacon.
Just a tad more festive I cut these into thirds and put each piece on a skewer to make a variety pack, sort of a Beer Brat Shish Kabob.
Jackie and I had a guest, made three shish kabobs bit left a couple of brats Naked in case someone had other preferences for toppings (but everyone wanted a Beer Brat Shish Kabob).
Dr. Fauci Is Looking Forward To Having A Beer And A Hot Dog At A Baseball Game When The Pandemic Is Over
By now, you probably have a bucket list a mile long for what you want to do when it's finally safe. I will personally be posting up in my favorite dive bar, drinking many vodka sodas, and making everyone listen to The Boys Are Back In Town over and over. Dr. Anthony Fauci, however, has different post-pandemic dreams, and they include enjoying a beer and a hot dog at a baseball game.
Dr. Fauci appeared on KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO in Los Angeles over the weekend and discussed everything from vaccine distribution to how to open schools safely. But the end of the segment was what really caught our ear, as the hosts asked Dr. Fauci what events he's most looking forward to attending once the pandemic is over. He named things like going to a movie theater and seeing Hamilton on Broadway again ("AGAIN?" Lucky. ).
Previously, radio hosts had asked Dr. Fauci what he's most looking forward to post-pandemic and he said that "rather than go home and cook, to just on the way home stop at a favorite small restaurant or a bar and sit there and have a beer and a hamburger or something and just relax." In this most-recent talk, Fauci acknowledged that yes, he still wants a burger and a beer, but he really would like a hot dog and beer at a baseball game, too.
"I also want to go to a ball game," Fauci said. "That's where I want to have my frankfurter and my beer."
Fauci is a noted baseball fan who frequently sports Washington Nationals masks and even threw the first pitch out at a game last year. Given that spring training is happening now, it makes sense that's what he's looking forward to. Now the only question is. mustard or ketchup, Dr. Fauci?